In “Letter from Jim,” Garrison Keillor tells the story of a man with a PhD in classics who, after years of teaching at the local college, loses his position due to low enrollment. The college offers him another job in the admissions office. There, he befriends a young, attractive coworker who sees him differently than Jim’s family sees him. In her eyes, he has worth and value, and in the eyes of his family, Jim feels he only serves the purpose of providing money so his wife can stay home, and his children can receive the things they want. As he contemplates his already-planned work conference getaway with his coworker, he observes, “I believe that men and women can part for many reasons, including lack of appreciation” (Garrison Keillor, “Letter from Jim,” News from Lake Wobegon, Highbridge Audio, April 9, 1990). The command against adultery is a command rooted in appreciation for the spouse God has given you. Fidelity in marriage means each partner continues to appreciate the other. No matter how unappreciated a spouse may feel by the other, there is no biblical warrant or excuse for infidelity. However, when we don’t take the time to nurture our relationship with one another, it can leave us vulnerable to temptation.
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